Southwestern gives first vaccinations

On Tuesday, January 12, PeopleCare Tavistock resident Earl Morrison was one of the first long-term care home residents in the Southwestern Public Health region to be vaccinated against COVID-19. Southwestern, in a statement, said, “This significant milestone in the region’s fight against the deadly virus resulted from a partnership among London Health Sciences Centre, Oxford County Emergency Medical Services, and the staff of Southwestern Public Health and the local care homes.”

In total 118 vaccines were administered at Maple Manor in Tillsonburg, Extendicare in Port Stanley and PeopleCare in Tavistock. The region has a total of 1,378 long term care home residents to vaccinate in addition to more than 500 residents in local retirement homes.

“Yesterday was an exciting first step in protecting the most vulnerable in our community,” said Dr. Joyce Lock, Medical Officer of Health for the region.

The health unit noted that due to a “very limited supply” of the Pfizer vaccine, this initial allocation was prioritized for individuals who have not yet tested positive for the COVID-19 illness, while those who have tested positive for COVID-19 would have a level of natural immunity upon recovery.